CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – Cleanup from the RNC underway as well as the removal of roadblocks as the Charlotte portion of the Republican National Convention was finished Monday afternoon, but that didn’t stop protests, marches, and even clashes among some unexpected groups.
Before the sun went down, the demonstrations that diverted attention away from both the convention and those opposed to it began.
Even before the event was over, FOX 46 saw moments of tension, like when a gay Trump supporter was going back and forth with a religious demonstrator and when a Black Lives Matter protestor was arguing with a Trump supporter.
That tension didn’t seem to leave. After the RNC was officially over, a rally at Marshall Park called ‘Resist RNC’ briefly turned into a shouting match with those against the rally. A number of people were pepper-sprayed, they say by police, as demonstrations shifted into the road.
“For those fools who stand up there and scream and holler and try to abuse us, I want you to ignore them. Because ignorance will hold us back,” said Corrine Mack, President of the Charlotte chapter of the NAACP.
There have been protests over the RNC since Friday, but those we spoke with that came out to the park say they did so out of frustration.
“I wish they’d see the light. He’s not good. He’s not good for the country,” Norm Zimmer said.
“I didn’t really want the RNC to come here, to begin with. I was really disappointed in Mayor Lyles when she made this decision,” Catherine El-Khouri said.
But at times, their voices were drowned out.
“You will go to hell when you die. Stop being rebellious. Shame on you. You guys are a loser like your candidate is a loser,” a counter-protester shouted at a group of demonstrators.
That aside, the people attending the rally don’t believe that. They believe in taking action.
“That’s sometimes the only way you can get people to make change,” El-Khouri said.
Charlotte Uprising has said that, even though the RNC is now out of Charlotte, they do plan on protesting every night of the convention.
Monday evening CMPD said officers used pepper spray on a protestor who was choking a woman and assaulted an officer.
As the night wore on, police say the demonstrators were blocking roads with construction material and debris in South End, and later on, a bicycle officer was pushed off his bike while trying to extinguish a fire lit by demonstrators.
Two arrests were made and pepper spray was deployed.